Tag Archives: success

Girls Trip Will Change Your Whole Entire Life

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Girls Trip Will Change Your Whole Entire Life

Girls Trip…Life Lessons

By, Ascellia M. Arenas
I’m sure after you watched “Girls Trip,” you didn’t think that you would walk away with life lessons that would help you design a path for the rest of your life. The movie starts off with the women living their individual lives, after graduating from college, having settled into their own families, and career paths. It is quite evident that the women are over the age of 40 and have an appreciation for life that women of a particular age do not have, yet. The type of appreciation shown by these ladies doesn’t usually manifest in women until after turning 40 years old, I digress. How does watching “Girls Trip,” change your life? Follow me…

1. Plan a trip/vacation with NO MEN ALLOWED. Sometimes you need to disconnect just to get back to yourself. If men show up along the way…remember who the guest list originally included. Plan a “baecation” for different time. 
2. Eat the cake. You only live once. Stop being so uptight. 

3. Everybody can’t be in VIP. Who said having VIP status to everything you attend actually makes you important? Chill Sis, it’s totally okay to be regular sometimes.

4. If he treats you bad, I’m speaking up. As your friend, I can’t co-sign anybody doing things that are hurtful to you. I’m going to tell you that it’s not cool and ultimately it will be your choice to take action, even if that action is to not speak to me for a little while. 

5. Chemistry is real. There’s a reason why that person makes you feel a certain type of way. Trust your instincts.

6. Puerto Rican Grandmothers are cute. Let them rock their outfits & flavor in peace. Understand your body and what looks good on you. Everything ain’t for everybody. 

7. Grapefruit is good. Grapefruit is great. Just be careful. Everything is good in moderation. Except crack…don’t do the crack. 

8. If you know your friend lives her whole entire life on the wild side, proceed with caution. You can observe, you can even participate a little, just make sure neither one of you ends up in the hospital or jail as a result of shared shenanigans. Be a friend, not a judge & jury.

9. If you go out together, come back together. Everybody is grown, yes…but, at least make the effort to communicate a plan of action. If she catches a big fish, help her pull it in the boat; then go downstairs to the lobby for early breakfast, or a snack, or something…ūüėŹ‚úäūüŹĺ

10. Fight fair. Trust that your friend is who she says she is. Nobody is perfect, everybody makes mistakes. The real test in relationships is in the ability to adjust your sails and keep going. 

11. Encourage your friends to be who you know they are, all of the time. Reflect back sincere encouragement and support. If your friends aren’t supporting your vision & dreams, especially where your talent is clearly evident/thriving; then, why are you friends? 

12. It’s all fun and games until somebody starts hallucinating. 

13. Make sure to pack a variety of wigs and shades (disguises) because… the internet. 

14. Girls from FAMU have it all…brains, beauty, hustle, loyalty, style, grace & will blow up the spot if somebody gets it twisted. 

“Girls Trip,” starring Regina Hall, Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Tiffany Haddish, directed by Malcolm D. Lee and written by Kenya Barris and Tracy Oliver, is in theaters now. The film has broken the myth that black females can’t lead a comedy, that a rated “R” comedy can’t exceed box office goals, while proving that Black Girl Magic IS alive and well. Organize an outing with your girlfriends to go see it to support box office receipts. Then, go back by yourself so that you catch anything you may have missed while you and your crew were literally laughing raucously out loud. Rotten Tomatoes gives the film 89% (a high B+ average), Cinema Scope gave it an A+, box office reports that opening weekend garnered over $30 million dollars in ticket sales. Big congratulations to my classmate, Will Packer, for making his mark in Hollywood and may he experience continued success! 

NO SEX!!!!???? What We Can Learn From Ciara and Russell: PDA’s Might Be Great For Business.¬†

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NO SEX!!!!???? What We Can Learn From Ciara and Russell: PDA’s Might Be Great For Business.¬†

 

By,  Ascellia Arenas 

So, I’m sure you’ve been watching the blogs and have seen this beautiful new couple making their rounds and openly discussing their relationship in the media. Recording artist Ciara and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson have been dating for a good little while and have not been secretive about their admiration for each other. Imagine that! What’s wrong with sharing a little PDA? Some people believe that talking about your “boo thang” will mark the demise of your relationship. My observation is that keeping it a secret and hiding/lying about the situation causes more harm in the long run. Their openness about their relationship has been a GOOD LOOK for both of them in the media lately. They definitely are becoming a true power couple. 

 

Future and Ciara are parents of 14 month old Future

 
Many wondered how “squeaky clean”  openly declared virgin, Ciara would fall for Rapper Future, who has fathered four other children out of wedlock. Ciara kept the details of her relationship with Future pretty quiet in the beginning. Once the duo became expectant parents more details about their relationship surfaced and continued during the tough parts that eventually brought about the end of their relationship. Reports claim that Future  was unfaithful and continuously maintained sexual relationships with multiple women during his time with the Pop Star, Ciara. 

 

Healthy baby Future is all smiles


 

After the pain, Ciara has bounced back with a new album “Jackie”, successful tour, and an impeccable performance at the 2015 BET awards, where she gave an electrifying homage to Janet Jackson who won the Icon Award.  Ciara hasn’t missed a beat. She happily discusses her great relationship with Wilson and he does the same. Recently,  Wilson was a guest on the Jimmy Kimmel Live show and he jokingly shared the details of their first argument. They fought over her support of Tom Brady on Instagram. This happened before they got together, and the squabble wasn’t as serious as I’m sure her beefs with Future were in the past. 

Women and men can  take a tip from what Russell and Ciara have allowed the media to share about their relationship. 
1. Ciara is a single mother, independent, and ambitious beyond finding a “rich man” to finance her life ; yet, she is still feminine, vulnerable, and ladylike. 

2. Russell pursues her, publicly acknowledges her, and praises her value and worth. 

3. This is GOOD publicity for both of them because it shows that a good man will demonstrate that he has good intentions regardless of what a woman’s past is. He will not degrade her by pointing out what he feels she lacks or did wrong. Ciara is moving forward with her life, making strides to improve her career and is allowing herself to be in a healthy relationship with someone who seems to have respect for her (and her son). 

This positively spins their characters and integrity in the media. He is a good guy and she is a good lady. This popularizes the notion that it is okay to have faith, and to seek healthy loving and supportive relationships with someone who respects you. This message is needed in media today more than ever.

Russell , a Christian,  also publicly announced their agreement to save sex until they are married. Who does that in 2015? Apparently they do and are happy with that choice. 

 

Saving sex for marriage and happy about it!

 
We need to see MORE examples of healthy relationships like theirs in the media. 

Perhaps we can change the “baby mama”, “baby daddy”, “single forever”, “selfish” and totally materialistic vibe that is so celebrated in media today. 


About the blogger

Arenas, published author, has been featured in several magazines, such as: MIA Magazine, Success Magazine, Legacy Magazine. She is the host blogger at cellibration.com, and hosts MIA-Live.net for BlogTalk Radio. Her books, ‚Äú30 Days of Dynamic Pursuit‚ÄĚ a self-help journal, and ‚ÄúSidetracked: He Used To Love Me‚ÄĚ, a coming of age novel, are both available at amazon.com.

Follow@sidetrackedbook on Instagram & Twitter

Summer Time Study Will Help Your Children Achieve 

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Summer Time Study Will Help Your Children Achieve 

By, Ascellia Arenas

Homework should still be going on regardless of the summer vacation from learning at school. A study conducted at the University of Ovideo, Spain revealed that  spending 90 or more minutes doing homework is less effective when compared to students who spend less time. 

According to the study, “Those who spent about 90 to 100 minutes a day on homework scored highest on the assessment‚ÄĒhowever, they didn’t outperform their peers who spent less time on homework by much. The researchers therefore determined that going from 70 minutes of homework a day to 90 minutes a day is not an efficient use of time. ‘That small gain requires two hours more homework per week, which is a large time investment for such small gains,’ they wrote. ‘For that reason, assigning more than 70 minutes homework per day does not seem very efficient, as the expectation of improved results is very low.’ “

As an educator, I personally recommend that independent, regulated, self study should be an ongoing daily practice to maximize learning benefits and to achieve learning gains especially over the summer months. 

Students are accustomed to spending 8 hours per day at school. Elementary school subjects are broken down into 30 minute intervals (ie. 30 minutes per subject Reading, Math, Science, Lanuage Arts, and History). The rest of the day is spent in specials (art, music, and PE) and then of course, lunch. Secondary students spend approximately 50 minutes per subject, per day. During the school year,  to spend over 100 minutes per night doing assignments seems excessive and does glean negative results. I have come to accept that 90% of my students opt out of doing homework because they have extra-curricular activities scheduled, they work, or they assist their working parents with the caregiving of younger siblings. The homework gets ignored. We are discussing summer time study habits here, though. Ignoring the books over the summer may cause your student to regress, this is especially true for students from low-income families.  Alicia Eames, author of, “Summer Reading and The Rich Poor Achievement Gap“, confirms the following:

“What we know is that any child who fails to read during the summer break will lose some reading proficiency. We also know that children from low-income families routinely lose two to three months of reading proficiency every summer while middle-class children gain about a month. This creates a three to four month gap every summer.”

The evidence supports that students who  spend time studying over the summer will improve their academic achievement. 

Easy Fix: 

Parents, visit a teacher supply store with a variety of published workbooks (Reading, Math, & Science), and purchase a few, preferably on grade level and/or rising grade level. It may help to have a teacher’s edition for you to use as a reference and to grade their work. If a student answers an assessment with 75-80% accuracy, they have achieved mastery. 

Daily practice with a review session immediately after they complete activities won’t take away from summer time fun. 
The summer time is also a great time to introduce novel study. Reward your child for completing each novel with a one-on-one discussion session over lemonade, pizza, or ice cream. In other words, make it something they appreciate and look forward to! Let them create a blog and keep an online journal of their summer reading experience. Who knows, they may discover a new passion, gain new perspective, or even develop an interest in becoming a novelist. The opportunities are endless. 

Let’s celebrate life-long learning, make it normal, fun, and a mandatory part of life in your home. As the familiar end of the year salutation is written in yearbooks and on their hand crafted tie dyed tees says, “HAGS” everybody! 

  
References:

http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/curriculum/2015/03/homework_math_science_study.html

http://www.slj.com/2013/06/standards/summer-reading-and-the-richpoor-achievement-gap-an-educator-responds-to-questions/

We Want A Piece of The Rock

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By, Celli Arenas

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has been named the highest-grossing actor of the year! Everybody wants a piece of “The Rock”, and here’s why:
1. The former Miami Hurricane Defensive Tackle/WWE Wrestler demonstrates certain confidence that draws both male and female audience members in. Is it that smile, the raised eyebrow, and the flex of his massive biceps that hook the viewers in…OF COURSE. He is gorgeous! The diverse combination of ethnicities of his parents created a tantalizing DNA cocktail that audiences can’t get enough refills of!
2. Money in the bank, yes. Move over Robert Downey, Jr. The Rock is here. I remember watching The Rock re-enter the press junket in 2011, he gave us fair warning that he was filming and wrapping several films at the same time. When he gave us the “heads up”, we had no idea that he would blow up like this! Jonson starred in four commercially successful films back to back. This is an opportunity that actors pray for. The film, “Fast & Furious 6” grossed $789 million globally. Combined with the box office proceeds from “G.I. Joe Retaliation”, “Pain and Gain”, and “Snitch”; Johnson, 41 year old box office phenom, closed out 2013, raking $1.3 billion in at the global box office. Not too shabby, Dwayne.
3. He is a cool guy. PERIOD. Everybody likes the guy that they can talk to. Johnson learned early on that possessing a positive attitude, being kind to good people and sticking it to the jerks is the way to go. We learned to cheer his good guy character on while watching him in the ring. He has a marketable strategy that has won him a spot in the highest grossing films of the year. He also got involved with smaller films and brought his brand value to them. No film snobbery here. His powerful pitch is engaging but his delivery on film, seals the deal. Yeah, Dwayne…we smell what The Rock is cooking, and we all want a piece!

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Grown Woman: Beyonc√© Changes The Game

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Beyonce

Game Changer

Much conversation has been about the December 13 release of the Beyonc√© album. ¬†Her unannounced release of the album came as a holiday surprise. Everyone found out about it at the same time! ¬†This well kept secret changed the notion that Friday the 13 is a “bad luck” day. Mrs. Beyonc√© Carter experienced the best luck ever. ¬†iTunes reports that King Bey broke the record for most sales in one day by eclipsing (nearly doubling) what Taylor Swift was able to achieve in a first week of sales, even with multi-layers of preamble promotion. ¬†Beyonce sold over 800,0000 copies of the digital wonder in the first weekend of sales. According to ¬†CBS, “Beyonce’s fifth album sold more than¬†617,000 units in its first three days in the U.S.¬†and 828,773¬†worldwide ‚Äď both iTunes records, iTunes says, adding that it leaped to No. 1 in 104 countries.”

She literally changed the game as far as marketing and promotion of newly released music is concerned. ¬†She is HER brand, her fans don’t need time to plan for spending money with her-they don’t need advanced warning. ¬†When her album hit the digital landscape, she created an “event” that people, worldwide, will remember, forever.

I gave the release of the #Beyoncé album some real thought and consideration. She really made her mark in history. Let me summarize with 3 reasons why I think Bey is deserving of kudos. 1. She saved money on one end of the marketing spectrum by not doing advance promotion to project and gather advanced sales. She just went for it and MADE SALES! She was smart to invest in creating a multi-media work of art that serves as both entertainment and a marketing tool. #smart

2. The songs “Drunk in Love” and “Blow” are currently the most popular songs on the album. ¬†Beyonc√© offers her artistic interpretations of how she and her husband #Jay-Z enjoy each other. It is lighthearted, flirty, reminiscent of Prince and The Revolution in the 80’s, and filled with metaphors that I’m sure only she and Jay truly understand. It is completely acceptable for her to express that type of attraction and emotion about her husband.There are women out here doing THE MOST (waaaaaaay above their pay grade) for men who wont even be a “boyfriend”! I can appreciate both of them and their healthy attitude toward their commitment to their marriage, family and business. They are getting it “IN”, and I ain’t mad at either one of them!

3. There are women (young and old) wearing less, doing worse, and hurting more people than Beyonc√© ever could with this album/videos, but they aren’t making .00000001% in their bank accounts for it. I think this album was revolutionary in that she created a new lane in the game and pulled it off with incredible success. If that isn’t the definition of feminism, I don’t know what is.c5eaa695f6c8c731383d76b7cf193b08